Montana’s Next Generation Conference, Shelby MT


BOZEMAN — Registration is now open for Montana’s Next Generation conference, which will take place Friday and Saturday, Jan. 27-28, in Shelby. The conference will include one day of business planning resources for the farm or ranch and one day of production workshops.


The conference will begin at 11 a.m. Friday at the Shelby Civic Center, located at 669 Park Ave. Friday’s events will feature Dave Pratt from Ranching for Profit Schools, which teaches business skills to farm and ranch operators. Pratt will lead two sessions, including “The Three Secrets for Increasing Profit” and “Hard Work and Harmony.” His goal is to give farmers and ranchers a different perspective of their agricultural operations and information about how to make operations profitable enough to pass on to the next generation.


Friday evening will include a trade show, a roast beef dinner and time for networking with neighbors, sponsors, and industry professionals. 


Saturday’s events, to be held at Shelby High School located at 1001 Valley St., will begin at 8:30 a.m. with opening remarks, followed by industry speakers and professionals offering nearly 40 workshop options covering crops and livestock production, financial management, record keeping, leasing, succession planning and other topics. The workshops are intended for both the beginning and experienced producer.


Crop-related topics will include grain marketing, crop insurance, crop alternatives, crop scouting, U.S. Department of Agriculture crop programs, production and marketing of grains and alternative crops and pulse crop disease management. Livestock topics will include genetic testing, bull selection, animal health, livestock marketing, supplementation decision making and beginning nutrition workshops. Related forage and grazing topics will include basic grazing management, intensive grazing, and hay production tips. Three sessions of farm safety and ATV safety will be offered throughout the day as well.


Financial and management-related topics will include sessions on farm tax law basics, financial recordkeeping, cash vs. accrual accounting, understanding what goes into a loan decision, corporate structuring, legal documents in agriculture and water rights and minimizing liability risk.


Workshops focused on succession planning will include dying without a will, communication in estate planning, early and late-stage investments, developing a succession plan and tax implications to consider in succession planning. For families committed to beginning succession planning, there will be professionals available at the conference to schedule follow-up appointments for Feb. 11.


The Jan. 28 workshops will fulfill the Farm Service Agency’s production and financial management training requirements for producers. Both commercial and private pesticide licensing recertification credits will be available throughout the day.


Throughout the Saturday session, there will be a farm and ranch new and improved fair where conference participants can vote for homemade or home-modified items that can make life on the farm or ranch more efficient. Top vote getters will earn $100, $75 or $50 for first, second or third place, respectively. To submit an item to the contest, visit the conference website for a form and details.


A beef brisket dinner at the high school, along with a trade show, will be held immediately following the Saturday workshops.


A full schedule may be found online at


Registration may be completed online at or by downloading forms at Paper forms are also available by calling (406) 873-2239. Updates will be available via the Montana’s Next Generation conference Facebook page.


Early bird registration cost is $25 a day for individuals or $40 a day for couples if registrations are submitted by Jan. 13. Late registrations will be accepted until Jan. 20 at $30 a day for individuals or $50 a day for couples.


Daycare will be available for both days at a cost of $15 a day per child, which will include snacks and meals.


Discounted motel rates of $75 per night are available at the Best Western Shelby Inn & Suites, (406) 424-4560, or the Comfort Inn, $70 per night for a single room or $75 per night for a double room if booked in advance of the conference, at (406) 434-2212. Mention Montana's Next Generation conference for the discounted rate.


The conference is hosted by the local Montana State University Extension office, Glacier and Toole County Farm Service Agency, Marias River Livestock Association and the Front Range Counties Farm Bureau.


For more information see or contact Lacy Roberts at (406) 873-5618, ext. 2, or Kari Lewis at (406) 873-2239.


Persons with disabilities who require accommodations to attend or participate in this event should contact Roberts or the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339 by Jan. 20.

Source:  MSU News

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